AIDSTAR-One Case Study - Risky Business Made Safer: HIV Prevention in Zambia's Border Towns


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In Zambia's border towns and commercial corridors, the HIV prevalence rate has been spiked due to an increasingly transient population. In response, the Corridors of Hope program works in border towns and corridor communities to promote HIV prevention and testing efforts to the general population and among at-risk groups.

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AIDSTAR-One Case Study - Risky Business Made Safer: HIV Prevention in Zambia's Border Towns

  1. 1. AIDSTAR-One | CASE STUDY SERIES October 2011Risky Business Made SaferCorridors of Hope: An HIV Prevention Program in ZambianBorder and Transit Towns1 L ivingstone, Zambia, is a bustling border town, filled with truck drivers, immigration officials, money changers, and many others who live there or pass through to take advantage of the town’s economic opportunities. With eight neighboring countries, similar towns dot the country’s borders and major transportation routes and are the heart of the nation’s agriculture, mining, and trading activities. Yet economic opportunities are also what make these towns hotbeds for the HIV epidemic. Poor women from Zambia and neighboring countries come to these towns to sell sex, using what ICRW they earn to feed themselves and send their children to school.Truck near a Zambia border These women are vulnerable to HIV and violence because of theircrossing. limited power with clients, and the illegal nature of their work makes it harder for them to access services to protect themselves. Their clients—truck drivers, vendors, and traders, as well as uniformed personnel such as police officers, immigration officials, and military servicemen—return home to their wives and other partners, spreading HIV throughout towns and across borders. From October 2006 to September 2009, phase II of the Corridors of Hope program (COH II) worked with many of these groups as well as with the broader population to stem HIV transmission in seven high-prevalence border towns and corridor communities, including Livingstone. COH II taught individuals about HIV prevention, providedBy Saranga Jain, HIV and sexually transmitted infection (STI) health services in clinics andMargaret Greene, through mobile units, and used a behavior change and communication strategy to change risky sexual behavior. COH II also addressed gender-Zayid Douglas, based violence and legal protection through referrals, as these wereMyra Betron, andKatherine Fritz 1 An AIDSTAR-One compendium and additional case studies of programs in sub-Saharan Africa that integrate multiple PEPFAR gender strategies into their work can be found at focus_areas/gender/resources/compendium_africa?tab=findings.AIDSTAR-OneJohn Snow, Inc.1616 North Ft. Myer Drive, 11th Floor This publication was produced by the AIDS Support and Technical Assistance ResourcesArlington, VA 22209 USA (AIDSTAR-One) Project, Sector 1, Task Order 1.Tel.: +1 703-528-7474 USAID Contract # GHH-I-00-07-00059-00, funded January 31, 2008.Fax: +1 703-528-7480 Disclaimer: The author’s views expressed in this publication do not necessarily reflect the views of the United States for International Development or the United States Government.
  2. 2. AIDSTAR-One | CASE STUDY SERIES needs frequently identified by sex workers, and worked with men to change PEPFAR GENDER their unsafe sexual behavior. STRATEGIES ADDRESSED BY This case study features how COH II addressed multiple gender-related CORRIDORS OF HOPE barriers to HIV prevention. AIDSTAR-One conducted in-depth interviews with key informants at the Livingstone District Administration Office, • Reducing violence and Southern Province National AIDS Council, and the U.S. Agency for coercion International Development (USAID) Mission. They also conducted group • Engaging men and boys to and individual interviews with program staff at the country level and with address norms and behavior staff at the Livingstone and Kazungula sites. Additionally, AIDSTAR-One held five focus group discussions in Livingstone with Zimbabwean sex • Increasing women’s and workers, “queen mothers,” truck drivers, police officers, and peer mentors. girls’ legal protection. Truck drivers and police officers had not necessarily participated in the program; the other groups were selected for their participation in the program. Gender and HIV in Zambia In 2007, Zambia’s HIV prevalence was an estimated 14 percent: 16 percent among women and just over 12 percent among men (MEASURE DHS 2009). But in areas along the borders, HIV prevalence is much higher. For example, provinces that include two of Zambia’s major transportation routes—in a triangular area formed between Lusaka, the border with Zimbabwe, and the Copperbelt area in the north—have the nation’s highest HIV rates, with the highest at 21 percent among both men and women in Lusaka province (MEASURE DHS 2009). HIV prevalence among sex workers is particularly high—65 percent in Lusaka, according to 2005 data (Joint UN Programme on HIV/AIDS and World Health Organization 2008). The Zambian Government has demonstrated a strong commitment to addressing HIV with its National Multi-Sectoral Response that uses a “Three Ones” approach2 and encompasses the public sector, civil society, cooperating partners and donors, the private sector, and politicians (Zambia National HIV/AIDS/STI/TB Council 2006). The government has also created a high-level Cabinet Committee of Ministers on HIV and AIDS, and all line ministries are assigned HIV/STI/tuberculosis focal point persons. Further, national priorities are taken up at the provincial and district levels by provincial AIDS task forces and district AIDS task forces (DATFs), which 2 Partners engaged in the global, national, and local responses to HIV have agreed on the “Three Ones”—one national AIDS framework, one national AIDS authority, and one system for monitoring and evaluation—as guiding principles for improving the country-level response (Joint UN Programme on HIV/AIDS 2005).2 AIDSTAR-One | October 2011
  3. 3. AIDSTAR-One | CASE STUDY SERIESoperate as decentralized coordinating structures of gender mainstreaming. There are also limitedfor private, civil, and government service providers. coordination mechanisms among ministries, donors,DATFs further build the capacity of community AIDS and service providers to address gender inequalitytask forces, which similarly coordinate efforts at the and its linkages with HIV.local level. Organizations often adapt their servicesbased on DATF recommendations.While the Government of Zambia has demonstrated The Corridors of Hopea strong commitment to tackling HIV, it has only Phase II Approachpartially addressed the link between HIV and genderinequality. In 2000, facilitated by the Gender in COH II’s approach followed guidelines suggested byDevelopment Division, the government adopted the government, such as targeting high-risk groupsa national gender policy. Subsequent initiatives defined in the national HIV policy, and expandedincluded the establishment of victim support units for its HIV prevention services and behavior changewomen within police stations, greater involvement of programs to the broader population in responsemen in HIV prevention and caregiving, more frequent to more recent government recommendations.collection of gender disaggregated data, free legal Its activities reflected the government’s efforts toadvice for individuals seeking counsel on issues use a coordinated response by working with othersuch as property rights and violence, and a Ministry service providers to provide women and menof Health drop-in center for free HIV counseling. The with comprehensive services, such as care andGender in Development Division has been working treatment, counseling, legal protection, and incometo strengthen the penal code on sexual and gender- generation. For example, incidents of gender-basedbased violence, align customary and statutory law to violence and legal protection were referred to localensure gender equality, and enact an anti-domestic police, while violence-related health care needs wereviolence bill. Though Parliament has yet to pass the referred to government hospitals. Some participantsbill,3 the government has demonstrated political will were also referred to education and economicto address the issue by launching a UN Children’s activities and programs, operating in locations withFund-backed campaign called “Abuse, Just Stop It” COH II November 2009.However, efforts to address gender inequality havenot been adequately integrated into the health sector. Development andThe government has not provided guidance on how Implementationto mainstream gender in HIV programming, andconsequently programs targeting HIV outcomes at Program Design and Start-up: COH II,the local level are not adequately addressing the funded by the President’s Emergency Plan for AIDSlink between HIV and gender-related barriers such Relief (PEPFAR) through USAID, was the 3-yearas poverty and sexual and gender-based violence. U.S.$11 million phase of a now 10-year-old programFurther, service providers lack skills to incorporate (COH). It was managed by Research Trianglegender into their assessment processes as well as International and implemented by Family Healththe capacity to monitor and evaluate the outcomes International in partnership with three Zambia-based nongovernmental organizations: Afya Mzuri, Zambia3 The Anti-Gender Based Violence amendment (Bill number 46 of 2010),along with the Penal Code amendment (Bill number 47 of 2010), went Health Education and Communication Trust, and thethrough a second reading in Parliament in February 2011. Zambia Interfaith Networking Group on HIV/AIDS. Corridors of Hope: An HIV Prevention Program in Zambian Border and Transit Towns 3
  4. 4. AIDSTAR-One | CASE STUDY SERIESIt aimed to reduce HIV transmission, morbidity, and and was an issue for the general population. COH IImortality in seven high-prevalence border towns and therefore aimed to reach the community at large incorridor communities in Zambia. The program used the towns and surrounding communities of Chipata,the ABC approach (abstinence until marriage, be Chirundu, Kapiri Mposhi, Kazungula, Livingstone,faithful, and correct and consistent use of condoms) Nakonde, and Solwezi. COH II continued to payto promote HIV prevention. COH II provided HIV special attention to the needs of sex workers, buttesting and counseling services, STI testing and it also targeted other groups potentially at risk oftreatment services, and condom distribution at its HIV, such as girls and young women engagingseven centers. Mobile units provided STI and HIV in transactional sex or cross-generational sex,outreach services such as voluntary counseling survivors of sexual and gender-based violence, andand testing to the general population including the HIV-negative partner within a serodiscordantresidents in remote areas. The program also used couple. A wide array of transient populations—a behavior change and communication strategy including truck drivers, uniformed personnel, traders,to raise awareness and knowledge about risky money changers, customs officials, and migrantsexual behavior of high-risk groups and the broader workers—and their sexual partners were targeted bycommunity. COH II sought to change attitudes and the program. School-aged youth were also targeted.practices around unsafe sex, particularly among COH II targeted services at each site to groups thatmen, whose high-risk behaviors increased their were at highest risk in that area.own risk of HIV infection and that of their femalepartners. COH II targeted the broader community In addition to recognizing the need to go beyondbecause the large numbers of transient populations traditional risk groups, program staff identified otherin border and transit towns made the prevention, lessons from COH I, such as increasing servicecare, and treatment needs of the whole community accessibility and working with community membersmore acute. Furthermore, the program worked with to reduce stigma and discrimination against sexcivil society and local and district government to workers. Staff learned that involving communitycoordinate efforts and better mobilize communities leaders in decision making and developing strongon HIV prevention, care, and treatment. partnerships with civil society and government was important for sustaining the program.COH II built on the successes and lessons learnedfrom COH I, a Family Health International program Behavior Change and Social Change: A keyimplemented from 2000 to 2006 in 10 Zambian component of COH II is behavior and social change.communities. COH I began with behavior change The project’s behavior change and communicationand STI services targeted toward female sex team used group sessions that employed aworkers and their clients, including truck drivers and reflective, participatory methodology with theuniformed services personnel. It added services for general population and at-risk groups in particularHIV testing and counseling, as well as services for to change individual risk behavior (Zambia COHyouth aged 15 to 19 in 2004 when it began receiving II 2008a, b). These REFLECT4 sessions sought toPEPFAR funding. 4 REFLECT is the acronym for “Regenerated Freirean Literacy throughWhile COH I successfully addressed HIV and STI Empowering Community Techniques.” Pioneered by the Brazilian educa- tor Paulo Freire, this approach is based on conscientization theory andinfections among traditional high-risk groups, HIV uses techniques of participatory rural appraisal to explore, and find solu-had meanwhile become a generalized epidemic tions to overcome, development challenges. The emphasis is placed on dialogue and action, raising awareness, cooperation, and Zambia, and HIV risk in border and transit Action AID developed REFLECT in 1993, and it is now used in over 60communities went beyond program target groups countries to address societal issues such as HIV and conflict resolution.4 AIDSTAR-One | October 2011
  5. 5. AIDSTAR-One | CASE STUDY SERIEShelp individuals meaningfully participate in decisions COH II clients. Peer educators shared messages inabout their own lives by helping them reflect on and ways that were appropriate for a particular group.create action plans to address their own concerns. For example, a former sex worker and COH II clientThe program used participatory tools to create an said her background legitimized her messagesopen, democratic environment for sharing and to when she went to bars to talk to sex workers.stimulate discussion. Participants were encouraged Another peer educator with a church group said sheto find their own solutions for reducing their HIV risk. could not discuss sex—and thus could not discussFor example, a few truck drivers interviewed as part abstinence—publicly, but was able to promoteof this case study said that they now sometimes HIV testing within the church. Each peer educatortraveled with their wives so that the sex they appeared to recognize the limitations of his or herengaged in was with a safe partner. own approach and the importance of coordination. They were willing to work with other groups evenStaff held REFLECT sessions as informal meetings when they did not promote HIV prevention the samewith groups of women or men in spaces where they way.felt safe or comfortable—in the rooms of sex workersor in the truck parks where truck drivers slept, for Working with Sex Workers, “Queenexample. The Zimbabwean sex workers interviewed Mothers,” and Men: Commercial sex work isfor this case study said that COH II staff came to common in Livingstone District, a hub for tourismtalk to them in their guest house about once a week, and cross-border trade, with Zambian sex workerssometimes more. often coming from the poorer Copperbelt Province or from Lusaka and foreign sex workers coming fromTo bring about social change, COH II used a neighboring countries such as Zimbabwe. COH IIsocial mobilization approach based on community met with groups of sex workers on a weekly basis.participation and action. Community groups worked They discussed HIV and STI transmission andcollaboratively to spread prevention messages strategies for protecting oneself against infection,among their members to change broader social as well as information on accessing complementarynorms around safer sex practices. Each COH II services provided by other agencies.project site had a Behavior Change CommunicationSteering Committee of local organizations to ensure COH II also worked with “queen mothers,” womenthat community members, particularly vulnerable in their 30s and 40s and often former sex workers,groups, had a voice in COH II program activities. who landlords hire to supervise sex workers inCOH II also partnered with a variety of local guest houses. The program trained them in saferstakeholders ranging from leaders to community sex practices, information they then shared with thegroups to government officials to coordinate services sex workers they monitored to better protect themso that messages and other behavior change efforts against HIV, STIs, and violence. Queen mothers alsowould be more effective. sometimes led REFLECT sessions with sex workers to help them discuss and solve their problems.As another part of its efforts on behavior and socialchange, COH II set up a peer educator program to REFLECT sessions were also held with at-riskdisseminate messages among target groups and the groups of men, such as truck drivers, male policebroader community. Peer educators were affiliated officers, immigration officials, money changers, andwith a range of community organizations and groups, traders to provide them with information on safer sexincluding churches, theater groups, youth groups, practices, STI and HIV transmission, alcohol as asupport groups for people living with HIV, and former risk to safe sex, and risks associated with multiple Corridors of Hope: An HIV Prevention Program in Zambian Border and Transit Towns 5
  6. 6. AIDSTAR-One | CASE STUDY SERIES partnerships. The program encouraged men to examine behavior that MONITORING AND increased their risk of HIV and asked them to offer realistic solutions to EVALUATION protect themselves. Monitoring data shows that COH Referrals and Collaborations: Where COH II did not provide a II reached over 1.6 million indi- service required by its target groups, it offered clients referrals, including viduals between 2007 and 2009 those for antiretroviral therapy and care services for HIV-positive clients. with efforts to curb risky behav- It referred women in need of legal protection services to the police and iors for HIV, along with those legal aid centers, and gender-based violence victims to hospitals and in HIV prevention, care, and the police. Thus, COH II developed an extensive referral network in each support. During the same period, community to provide a comprehensive response to client needs. over 1,600 individuals were trained in various program ar- Additionally, COH II collaborated and coordinated with district and local eas, including messaging around government and civil society. For example, COH II was a key member of the abstinence and faithfulness, and DATF in each district in which it implemented activities and helped build the the promotion of condom use. capacity of DATF members in peer education. COH II staff also participated From 2007 to 2009, COH II pro- in activities such as Field Days, in which multiple service providers offered a vided 69,000 men and women wide array of services to residents within a select remote area. with HIV testing and counseling, and from 2007 to 2008, an addi- tional 7,800 individuals accessed What Worked Well STI screening services. COH II contributed to PEPFAR’s goals in Zambia to prevent new HIV infections and provide individuals with care and support services. Mobile outreach units were successful in increasing demand for and use of voluntary counseling and testing and other HIV prevention services. Nearly 85 percent of the individuals tested by COH II were seen at the mobile units. The program also offered voluntary counseling and testing services during local ceremonies such as harvest celebrations at the invitation of traditional leaders; unanticipated demand often resulted in the mobile units having to stay additional days in the community. In interviews with sex workers, women said the COH II program was one of the few services available to them and the only one in which they were treated with dignity and respect. They reported that the clinic-based services were reliable for treating STIs effectively, and behavior change sessions had helped them develop strategies to protect themselves from HIV, STIs, and violence. The COH II facility was centrally located in a nondescript house, and its services were well known. In informal conversations around the Livingstone site, COH II was described as having a trusted reputation in the community and providing accessible and effective treatment services for STIs.6 AIDSTAR-One | October 2011
  7. 7. AIDSTAR-One | CASE STUDY SERIESMany sex workers from Zimbabwe interviewed as men did not secretly remove the condom or cutpart of this case study said that they knew how to off the tip. Queen mothers reported that condomprotect themselves from HIV and STIs as a result cutting had gone on because women had becomeof COH II training, which reinforced what they had better at monitoring men. Queen mothers alsolearned from school-based sex education programs said they addressed alcohol and HIV risk with sexin Zimbabwe. They reported that REFLECT sessions workers, explaining that alcohol interferes with thegave them the skills and confidence to refuse men effectiveness of antiretroviral drugs, and forbadewho did not want to use condoms without fearing drinking in the guest houses. They encouragedconsequences—they felt it was their choice. They women to wear a female condom when solicitingalso said they talked to recent arrivals (fellow sex clients at bars to ensure they were protected if drunk.workers) at their guest house, encouraging them toprotect themselves from HIV and sharing strategies Queen mothers stated that they helped protecton doing so. Most men did not want to use condoms sex workers from violence. Both sex workers andand had to be convinced, they reported. Some of the queen mothers said during interviews that physicalwomen said they talked to their clients about HIV and violence and sexual and gender-based violenceSTI prevention, which convinced some men to utilize were a frequent occurrence for sex workers. Queencondoms while others were uninterested. mothers said they encouraged sex workers to use peer groups for protection, and sex workers reportedQueen mothers reported that they worked with sex that they looked after each other to prevent abuse,workers to develop prevention tactics. For example, using tactics such as keeping doors unlocked andthey taught sex workers techniques to make sure monitoring when a client entered a room with a sexmen did not take off a male condom or push aside worker. Queen mothers reported that while theya female condom. Queen mothers also said that relied on male guards and other women in the housesome sex workers kept the light on to ensure that to respond to violent men, they rarely called the PROGRAM INNOVATIONS • Targeting at-risk groups in conjunction with the broader community responded to the generalized epidemic in Zambia. • Working with sex workers, particularly foreign sex workers, helped address the needs of a key target group that is particularly vulnerable to HIV, yet has little or no access to services. • Targeting high-risk groups in each site based on the local context allowed for more effective programming. • Close coordination with civil society organizations and local and district government through DATFs and other efforts ensured geographic and service gaps were addressed. • Including community stakeholders and beneficiaries in designing, implementing, and evaluating the program, as well as building the capacity of local implementing organizations in administering, implementing, and evaluating the project, helped the project build in sustainability. • Working with men and creating a referral network of services for women, such as for those who have experienced gender-based violence, recognized the need to address gendered vulnerabilities. Corridors of Hope: An HIV Prevention Program in Zambian Border and Transit Towns 7
  8. 8. AIDSTAR-One | CASE STUDY SERIESpolice or neighborhood watches because of stigma gender equality except through referrals to otherand fear of arrest. services, some of which were limited in scope and effectiveness. In addition, program staff said thatIn interviews with truck drivers and police officers, clients often complained about the referral system,some had accurate knowledge of HIV transmission as they found it difficult to access service providersand risk as a result of the COH II program and in different locations because of transportation costsinformation provided by their employers. Truck and the burden it placed on their other responsibilities.drivers said that they sometimes used condoms They also found it difficult to disclose their personalwith sex workers but never with wives. Some histories to different service providers at each referralmen reported that they did not protect themselves agency. Program staff added that they tried to trackbecause they believed contracting HIV was clients to determine if they reached referral agencies,inevitable. In contrast, when interviewed, male but that this often proved to be a challenge.and female police officers demonstrated a soundknowledge of HIV risk and prevention, and reported Police as a barrier: While police can bethat they had easy access to condoms as these effective, respectful service providers, the policewere provided by the police department. Many of interviewed for this case study spoke openly aboutthe officers indicated they even purchased better their discrimination against, and abuse of, sexquality condoms to demonstrate that they practiced workers. Sex workers repeatedly said in interviewsprotected sex. that they did not feel safe seeking help from police officers, and foreign sex workers said they were particularly vulnerable to police abuse. As oneChallenges and woman explained, “If we go to the police, they ignoreLessons Learned us because we are Zimbabweans.” Another woman said that she had gone to the police’s victim supportLimits of a referral system: While COH unit when she had been badly beaten by a man, butworked effectively with women and men to change was dismissed by police officers without receivingharmful behaviors that increased their HIV risk, assistance. Women also said that violent men whothe program was not designed to address broader were arrested were often quickly released, sendinggender inequalities that put women at risk. While sex the message that violence against sex workers wasworkers sometimes discussed strategies to protect not a priority of the police.themselves from violent clients and gang rape duringREFLECT sessions, sexual and gender-based Police officers themselves said they felt no obligationviolence was not discussed with men as part of to provide services to sex workers because theirprogram activities. The link between HIV and sexual work was illegal and furthermore, some sexand gender-based violence was also rarely made workers were not Zambian citizens. They admittedin discussions with men and women, except where demanding sexual favors from attractive womensex workers themselves identified rape as a risk for who sought assistance in the victim support unitHIV infection. This posed a missed opportunity for a in exchange for police services, dismissing anyprogram that was well placed to influence individual responsibility because they were “only men.” Onebehavior as well as societal norms around violence of the department heads even made jokes aboutagainst women, but whose mandate did not include violence as a useful way to “discipline” women,it. Similarly, the program was not designed to address confirming that violence against women was notthe need for legal protection, income equality, and taken seriously by the department or its leadership.8 AIDSTAR-One | October 2011
  9. 9. AIDSTAR-One | CASE STUDY SERIESThese responses are particularly problematic in the Legal barriers: The stigma and marginalizationcontext of the COH II program in that the program of sex work in Zambia makes it extremely difficult forrelies on violence-related referrals to the police sex workers to seek services such as health care ordepartment’s victim support units. Clearly, there is legal protection in cases of rape or assault becausean urgent need to work with police departments to they fear abuse and arrest. It also makes it easychange male attitudes and behaviors that harm the for men—including authority figures such as policewomen they are supposed to serve. officers—to take sexual or financial advantage of sex workers without consequences. Sex workers whoEntrenched norms limit work with men: are in the country illegally are doubly vulnerable.Social norms around masculinity and how women They are more vulnerable to abuse and accessare valued limit behavior change among men. For services less because of fear of arrest or stigma thanexample, while some truck drivers interviewed Zambian sex workers. According to sex workers andin this study reported that they sometimes used police officers, women identified as sex workers cancondoms with sex workers and condom use with be arrested in any public setting under the pretextsex workers was perceived as acceptable, they also of public nuisance, while a sexual double standardsaid that condom use with wives was completely permits men to purchase the services of sex workersunacceptable because of norms around male power with impunity. Sex workers also reported that policein the home and because a partner requesting raids of sex worker guest houses are common,condom use was an admission of extramarital sex or and sometimes women are raped before releaseHIV/STI infection. from police custody. The stigma of sex work that discourages women from seeking health and legalSex workers in this case study expressed a strong protection services, combined with men’s exploitationconcern for the wives of their clients, whom they of women’s vulnerability in this regard, are keybelieved lacked information on STIs and HIV and factors in worsening the HIV epidemic in Zambianthus were unable to protect themselves. One border and transit towns.woman said, “[Men] come here, they want to haveunprotected sex, they go home, they infect their Need for a regional response: Program staffwives.” Another added, “That’s why we encourage at COH II stated that a key challenge in addressingthem to use condoms with us. Because if they go HIV in border and transit towns is that the epidemicback home, they infect their wives.” These women cannot be addressed by one country. Countries needsaid that there is an unmet need for programs to to work together to ensure an adequate response,work with men, including educated men, on HIV and programs need to involve entire regions toprevention education. appropriately address the problem and the many groups involved. This requires regional programs thatOn a more positive note, truck drivers expressed involve coordination across governments and servicethe desire for recreation opportunities other than providers in neighboring countries.drinking and sex, explaining that they sought sexworkers because there was nothing else to do when Stigma and discrimination in healthwaiting at the border for deliveries or border passes. care settings: There is a need to provideThey added that quicker transitions at the border or services to stigmatized groups and foreigners infacilities for engaging in sports or similar activities a nonjudgmental fashion. Sex workers said theywould help them avoid these risky situations. This preferred to receive health services at COH II’sis a valuable insight that could be incorporated into clinics, where they were treated with dignity, ratherprogram design as COH II begins its next phase. than government health centers that treated sex Corridors of Hope: An HIV Prevention Program in Zambian Border and Transit Towns 9
  10. 10. AIDSTAR-One | CASE STUDY SERIESworkers poorly and discriminated against foreigners. training, guidelines, and coordination are needed toForeign sex workers reported that they were charged mainstream and implement gender strategies intohigher rates in public hospitals than Zambian HIV efforts. Service providers also need genderwomen and that examinations and treatment they indicators and training on monitoring and evaluatingreceived were badly administered because of the gender mainstreaming efforts, and these measuresdiscriminatory attitudes of some health care workers. can provide an opportunity for a program like COHChanging discriminatory attitudes and practices to address broader gender inequalities, such asrequires raising awareness of service providers and gender-based violence, that increase one’s HIV risk.the broader community in border areas as to therights and treatment of sex workers and immigrants. Future ProgrammingPoverty as a barrier for women: Sex workersinterviewed in this study reported that men paid COH II was funded for an additional five yearssignificantly more for sex without a condom. Queen as COH III, which began in October 2009. Themothers said that men paid about 15,000 Zambia emphasis of this phase of the program will continuekwacha (about U.S.$3) for sex with a condom, and to be on reaching the broader population withabout 25,000 kwacha (about U.S.$5) for sex without behavior change efforts for HIV prevention. COHa condom. While many sex workers practiced safe III has planned activities to address gender-basedsex, they said they sometimes made exceptions violence more effectively. It will provide outreachabout condom use during difficult financial times to and counseling to women on gender-based violence,earn more money. Women understood that poverty training to health care workers on violence-relatedput them at risk of HIV infection. A Zimbabwean sex risk assessment and medical care, and referralsworker explained, “They take the money because they to partner organizations, hospitals, and the policeare in need of it. They can’t think about tomorrow.” service’s victim support units. The program will alsoSex workers said they dreamt of having an income target youth to provide personal risk assessmentfrom some alternative source—either running their skills and violence education, as well as targetown small business, securing a better job, or finding a influential community members, such as traditionalstable partner who would provide for them—but none birth attendants and the wives of male communityof them knew of any income generation programs. leaders, to provide violence-related communicationCOH II program staff confirmed that few programs of and risk assessment skills.this nature exist at their program sites. Plans for COH III include targeting men specificallyNeed to strengthen gender to change harmful male norms that are linked withmainstreaming: Finally, government and civil HIV such as gender-based violence and multiplesociety services that address HIV often do not and concurrent partnerships through group-basedunderstand or address gender-related barriers that sports activities for young and adult men. COHcan affect HIV outcomes, and that gender-related III will use the Stepping Stones training packageefforts such as the legal protection of women (Welbourn 1995) and REFLECT discussions tooperate separately from the health sector. As one train men in gender and sexuality topics, includingrespondent explained, “Don’t look for coherence violence and relationship skills, and to encouragein these programs, because you won’t find it.” them to develop their own solutions to problemsThe Zambian Government’s response requires such as violence. It will also use resources suchguidance on how to mainstream and implement as the Health Communications Partnership Men’sgender equality in HIV programming. Adequate Health Kit (Health Communications Partnership10 AIDSTAR-One | October 2011
  11. 11. AIDSTAR-One | CASE STUDY SERIES2009) and the One Love Kwasila! (One Love Zambia National HIV/AIDS/STI/TB Council. 2006.Kwasila! 2009) resources to address norms around National HIV and AIDS Strategic Framework.multiple and concurrent partnerships. g Lusaka, Zambia: Republic of Zambia, and National HIV/AIDS Council.REFERENCES RESOURCESHealth Communication Partnership. 2009. Men’sHealth Kit. Baltimore, MD: Health Communication Integrating Multiple PEPFAR Gender StrategiesPartnership. to Improve HIV Interventions: Recommendations from Five Case Studies of Programs in Africa: www.Joint UN Programme on HIV/AIDS. 2005. The“Three Ones” in Action: Where We Are and Where recommendationsWe Go from Here. Geneva, Switzerland: UNAIDS. Integrating Multiple Gender Strategies to ImproveJoint UN Progamme on HIV/AIDS and World Health HIV and AIDS Interventions: A Compendium ofOrganization. 2008. Epidemiological Fact Sheets on Programs in Africa. Corridors of Hope II (p. 190):HIV and AIDS, 2008 Update. Available at http://apps. compendium_Final.pdfEFS2008_ZM.pdf (accessed October 2009)MEASURE DHS. 2009. 2007 Zambia Demographicand Health Survey (ZDHS) HIV Prevalence. HIV Fact CONTACTSSheet. Calverton, MD: MEASURE DHS. Corridors of Hope IIOne Love Kwasila! 2009. Home page. Available 55 Independence Ave., Plot 560, P.O. Box 30323,at (accessed Lusaka, ZambiaNovember 2009) Tel: + 260 21 1156 453/5 Website:, www.rti.orgWelbourn, A. 1995. Stepping Stones: ATraining Package on HIV/AIDS, Gender Issues, Leslie Long, Chief of Party/Project Director,Communication and Relationship Skills. London: Corridors of Hope IIStrategies for Hope. Email: Corridors of Hope II. 2008a. Behavior Shawn Aldridge, COH II Technical Manager,Change and Social Mobilization Strategy. Research Triangle InternationalImplementation Guide. Available at Email: saldridge@rti.orgHIVAIDS/pub/res_COHII_SBCtools.htm (accessedOctober 2009) ACKNOWLEDGMENTSZambia Corridors of Hope II. 2008b. ReflectMethodology and Participatory Rural Appraisal The authors would like to thank Leslie Long at(PRA) Tools Guide. Implementation Guide. Available Family Health International Zambia and Shawnat Aldridge at Research Triangle International,Zambia_COH_II_REFLECT_TOOLS_BOOKLET_ as well as Felly Nkweto Simmonds (formerlyHV.swf (accessed October 2009) of Family Health International), Martin Bwalya, Corridors of Hope: An HIV Prevention Program in Zambian Border and Transit Towns 11
  12. 12. AIDSTAR-One | CASE STUDY SERIESChilufya Mwaba-Phiri, Moses Simuyemba, and including staff from Encompass, LLC; John Snow,Alison Cooke-Matutu with the Corridors of Hope Inc.; and the International Center for ResearchPhase II (COH II) for helping organize their visit on Women for their support of the developmentand better understand the project’s many sites and publication of these case studies that grewand activities. Thanks also to Stephen Nyangu, out of the Gender Compendium of Programs inAgatha Simubali, Patience Shinondo Nyakunzu, Africa. Finally, thanks to the women and men—Hellen Lungu, Patricia Akalalambili, Aaron Mwanza, sex workers, queen mothers, truck drivers,Ernest Musonda, and Milner Kachani at the COH II police officers, and peer mentors—whom wereLivingstone site office, whose daily commitment to interviewed. Their honesty shed light on the trulythe women and men they work with was inspiring. difficult challenges faced by high-risk groupsThanks also to Harriet Kawina at Livingstone’s working in border and transit towns.District Administration Office, Catherine Chibalaand Elizabeth Moonga with Southern Province’s RECOMMENDED CITATIONNational AIDS Council, and Cornelius Chipomaat the U.S. Agency for International Development Jain, Saranga, Margaret Greene, Zayid Douglas, MyraMission for kindly explaining the ins and outs of Betron, and Katherine Fritz. 2011. Risky BusinessZambia’s gender and HIV response. Thanks to Made Safer—Corridors of Hope: An HIV Preventionthe President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief Program in Zambian Border and Transit Towns. CaseGender Technical Working Group for their support Study Series. Arlington, VA: USAID’s AIDS Supportand careful review of this case study. The authors and Technical Assistance Resources, AIDSTAR-One,would also like to thank the AIDSTAR-One project, Task Order 1. AIDSTAR-One’s Case Studies provide insight into innovative HIV programs and approaches around the world. These engaging case studies are designed for HIV program planners and implementers, documenting the steps from idea to intervention and from research to practice. Please sign up at to receive notification of HIV-related resources, including additional case studies focused on emerging issues in HIV prevention, treatment, testing and counseling, care and support, gender integration and more.12 AIDSTAR-One | October 2011